Boston College's Institutional Master Plan Calls For
University Housing For All BC Undergraduates

10 Year Plan
Click image to enlarge

CHESTNUT HILL, MA (6-24-08) -- Boston College is proposing to add 1,280 new beds of undergraduate housing in its 10-year Institutional Master Plan (IMP) presented June 20, 2008 to the Boston Redevelopment Authority, making it the first college or university in Boston to meet 100 percent of student demand. The University will reach this milestone by increasing the number of beds on the Lower Campus by 220, by converting the recently purchased apartment building at 2000 Commonwealth Avenue to 560 beds of University housing, and by constructing 500 beds of housing on the Brighton Campus. 

The housing plan will fulfill the University’s commitment to a mixed use of academic, residential and co-curricular facilities on its Chestnut Hill, Newton and Brighton campuses. To ease abutters' concerns, the University will build the 500 beds in Brighton in two phases, with 150 beds being built within the first 1-3 years of the 10–year plan, and the remaining 350 beds in years 7-10. Once the new housing is completed, Boston College will have a total of 8,610 beds for its 8,600 resident students.

The proposed IMP will exceed $1 billion in construction and renovation projects over the next decade and will generate an estimated 12,000 jobs.

Among its highlights:
  • 1,280 new beds of undergraduate housing to meet 100 percent of demand.
  • Four new academic buildings on the Middle Campus in Chestnut Hill, including Stokes Commons, a 125,000 square-foot academic facility to be used as an interim student center and dining hall, a 125,000 square-foot academic facility for the humanities, a 75,000 square-foot facility to house the Graduate School of Social Work and the Connell School of Nursing, and a 100,000 square-foot Integrated Sciences building.  
  • A 200,000 square-foot Recreation Complex on St. Thomas More Road on Lower Campus at the present site of Edmond's Hall.
  • A 285,000 square-foot University Center on Lower Campus to accommodate BC's 230 student organizations, and provide dining and conference space for students and faculty.
  • A Fine Arts District on the Brighton Campus that will include a 55,000 square–foot Fine Arts/Museum complex and a 30,000 square-foot auditorium. 
  • A 1,500-seat baseball and 500-seat softball field, as well as a multi-purpose field for intramural sports on the Brighton Campus.
  • Housing for 75 Jesuit faculty and graduate students from the Weston Jesuit School of Theology, which re-affiliated with Boston College on June 1.  
  • 350 parking spaces added to the Beacon Street Garage and the construction of a 500-space parking facility to serve the Brighton Campus.
  • Conversion of the former St. William's Hall at 9 Lake Street on the Brighton Campus into offices and classrooms for the new School of Theology and Ministry.

 

“The Institutional Master Plan presented by Boston College results from three years of internal assessment and planning as well as extensive consultation with our Brighton neighbors.  What we are proposing, especially in regard to undergraduate housing, is a win-win for Boston College, the surrounding neighborhood, and the City of Boston," said Boston College President William P. Leahy, S.J.  "This plan reflects BC’s longstanding commitment to be a good neighbor and to continue providing a quality educational experience true to our Jesuit, Catholic heritage.”

In addition to meeting 100 percent of housing demand, the University has committed to restricting BC undergraduates from renting in one- or two-family homes in the 02134, 02135 and 02467 zip code areas of Allston-Brighton and Newton, once the proposed housing is completed. Boston College has also announced a mortgage assistance program that will help BC employees with families buy homes in the Allston-Brighton area to help address the community's desire for increased neighborhood stability.  

The $1 billion investment in construction and renovation and the commitment to full housing are particularly significant for Boston College, which only 35 years ago was a nearly insolvent commuter school. Today, it is a national university that draws students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries, and is considered one of the nation's most selective schools. It is currently ranked 35th in the U.S. News & World Report rankings, and its endowment now stands at $1.75 billion. It is one of only 30 private universities in the United States that has a need blind admissions policy and that meets the full demonstrated need of all accepted students.

As per the Article 80 section of the Boston Zoning Code, the IMP submission will be followed by a 60-day comment period and public hearings before the BRA Board and the Boston Zoning Commission, before submission to the Mayor of Boston.


Media coverage

Boston Globe
Boston Herald